Tuesday, 28 October 2003

This presentation is part of : Display Presentations, Section Cd. Behavior and Ecology

Feral honey bees in pine forest landscapes: The role of landscape structure

Robert N. Coulson1, Maria D. Tchakerian1, Alice M. Pinto1, Kristen A. Baum1, and William L. Rubink2. (1) Texas A&M University, Knowledge Engineering Laboratory, Entomology Department, Heep Center, Texas A&M University, College Station, TX, (2) USDA ARS, Beneficial Insects Research Unit, 2413 E. Highway 83, Bld. 213, Weslaco, TX

To evaluate quantitatively the suitability of the pine forest to feral honey bees, we used a spatial database for the Sam Houston National Forest in southeast Texas and FRAGSTATS. The landscape structure in 1256ha units surrounding 6 swarms of honey bees captured in the swarm traps was examined. The metrics used to characterize the kind, number, size, shape, and configuration of elements forming the landscape, defined a heterogeneous environment for honey bees that included food and habitat resources needed for survival, growth, and reproduction. Although classified as a pine forest, management practices and human activities have dissected, perforated, and fragmented the landscape and thereby added structural complexity and floral diversity.

Species 1: Hymenoptera Apidae Apis mellifera (African honey Bee)
Species 2: Hymenoptera Apidae Apis mellifera (European honey Bee)
Keywords: landscape metrics, Pine Forests

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